Norwich tennis ace Monica Raviraj targets the top as her success keeps on coming
- Credit: Submitted
Young Norfolk Sports Academy member Monica Raviraj updates us on her impressive progress.
Tennis prodigy Nathan Wells is one of 15 young athletes receiving coaching from the Young Norfolk Sports Academy.
The 13-year-old studies at Norwich School, is ranked number one in Norfolk at under-14 and under-16 levels and has recently received a call-up to represent Great Britain.
In the latest of our monthly updates with YNSA athletes, Monica gives us an insight into her sporting development.
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I am very happy and excited to have recently been selected by the Young Norfolk Sports Academy for their 2015 programme. YNSA is supporting me in many ways such as physical fitness, nutrition and mental sports psychology.
My summer tennis season was excellent and despite having to work around school exams, I had very successful UK and European tournaments.
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I finished third in the Dublin Open U14 Girls Singles European tournament and went through to the quarter-final in the doubles tournament. I also won both the singles championship and the doubles championship at the Tennishöllin Open in Iceland and finished the summer season with a top-10 UK ranking and 365th in Europe for U14 girls.
I was selected for the British Tennis Camp 2015, in London, which provided me with the unique opportunity of playing with Judy Murray, Jamie Murray and Anne Keothavong.
I really learnt from their experience and they have given me some good tips to use in the future. I trained very hard at the national training camp and as a result I was selected for the GB team to play against France in November. Six years of hard work has resulted in my dream coming true!
My international training programme at the Mouratoglou Tennis Academy in Paris was excellent. I had an opportunity to hit with the women's world number one Serena Williams and her coach Patrick Mouratoglou. She was very kind to share some of her experiences.
I also had another training block with French Open winner Juan Carlos Ferrero at the JC Ferrero Equelite Tennis Academy in Spain.
I am training hard for my forthcoming tournaments in the USA. I plan to compete in the Eddie Herr International Junior Championships 2015 on Florida's west coast in November, before travelling to Miami to train for the next tournament, the 54th annual Junior Orange Bowl 2015 International Tennis Championships in December.
I must thank Norwich School in generously supporting me at school and my tennis training programme. I also have understanding friends who support me whilst I am away for training. Alongside tennis, I love art and paintings and I have painted loads of pictures during my free time.
My objective for the next year is to increase my quality of on-court tennis, develop my training and fitness programme and to compete in high level UK and European tournaments.
I believe that being part of YNSA will support me in this through providing me with a better understanding of the challenges an elite athlete faces and how to address them. However I don't want to put pressure on myself to improve my tennis ranking. I am confident, with my hard working team, that I'm on the right path towards achieving my dream.
The Young Norfolk Sports Academy (YNSA) was launched by Norwich School during the previous academic year. The project aims to bring together young talent from different sports, to offer coaching in the various aspects of life for an elite athlete, as well as expert support, training and education. The YNSA athletes are part of a physical tracking programme and will develop their understanding of topics such as nutrition, psychology, injury rehabilitation and handling the media.
Norwich School completed a successful pilot scheme with their own athletes and decided to extended the opportunity across the county. Applicants for the YNSA needed to be between 15 and 18 years old and ranked in the top 10 of their chosen sport in their home country in their age group, and also have a proven record of performance.
For more information, go to www.ynsa.org.uk.